Bills-Heavy Crowd Of 20,000 Attends Pro Football HOF Ceremony
A crowd of about 20,000 attended yesterday's Pro Football HOF induction ceremony at Canton's Fawcett Stadium, as "a sea of Bills jerseys -- roughly half the crowd" -- was on hand to see Andre Reed. One of the "biggest cheers of the night" came when HOFer Jim Kelly, battling cancer, was introduced. The crowd "gave Kelly a 60-second standing ovation," and he later "threw a pass to Reed onstage" (BUFFALO NEWS, 8/3). Also inducted were Michael Strahan, Derrick Brooks, Ray Guy, Claude Humphrey, Walter Jones and Aeneas Williams. Strahan's speech "closed the ceremony that ended just before midnight -- nearly two hours later than scheduled" (AP, 8/3).
Meanwhile, the HOF announced a "proposed change to its selection process that would take the selection of contributors out of the hands of its 46-member selection committee made up of media members and put that in the hands of a contributors committee in the future" (CANTON REPOSITORY, 8/2). This is "good news for the Hall of Fame hopes of contributors who have been voted down recently," including former 49ers Owner Eddie DeBartolo Jr., late Browns and Ravens Owner Art Modell and former Commissioner Paul Tagliabue (PROFOOTBALLTALK.com, 8/1).